Charles Krauthammer on Friday scolded Gordon Peterson, the host of PBS's "Inside Washington," for blaming Shirley Sherrod's termination on Fox News.
As he introduced the first topic of the evening, Peterson said, "Which brings me to the story of ousted Agriculture Department official Shirley Sherrod who was let go on the basis of a single piece of internet video that was edited out of context, posted on a conservative website, picked up on Fox News, and bought lock, stock and barrel by the Obama administration."
When Krauthammer got his turn, he went right after Peterson saying, "Speaking of apologies, perhaps you ought to apologize for saying that Fox News had her on the air before the administration had fired her" (video follows with partial transcript and commentary):
GORDON PETERSON, Host: Some of you may remember the good old days of newspapering and TV and radio news when you had hours to work on your story, and your editors and producers had plenty of time to sift through your stuff for accuracy. If you remember that, you're a dinosaur. Welcome to the blogosphere, the burnout pace of online news and the 24 hour instant deadline. Which brings me to the story of ousted Agriculture Department official Shirley Sherrod who was let go on the basis of a single piece of internet video that was edited out of context, posted on a conservative website, picked up on Fox News, and bought lock, stock and barrel by the Obama administration. [...]
CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: Speaking of apologies, perhaps you ought to apologize for saying that Fox News had her on the air before the administration had fired her. In fact, she was fired in the late afternoon. She appeared on Fox, her story appeared on Fox News later. And I would tell you that the next day at a time when she remained fired, Secretary of Agriculture had repeated his intention to have her fired. The main news show 6:00 had her on, and I called for apology, restitution and reinstatement as did the entire Fox News panel. So, if we're going to put all this in context and speak about the context, I think it ought to be universal.
As NewsBusters reported Thursday, "Fox's first call for a resignation, made by Bill O'Reilly just before 9:00 pm on Monday, came roughly an hour after Sherrod had actually resigned."
Despite this fact, others on the IW panel -- Colby King of the Washington Post, syndicated columnist Mark Shields, and NPR's Nina Totenberg -- continued to point their irresponsible fingers at Fox.
After King said, "It is beyond comprehension what they will do on that side," Krauthammer had enough:
Talk about selective editing. The main news show on Fox is 6:00 with Bret Baier. I am a commentator on that every night. I know what happened. We didn't touch the story on Monday because we had no background...This is not a Fox News story. This is an administration story. This is an NAACP story. And it's a Shirley Sherrod story.
Before going to commercial, Krauthammer marvelously concluded, "In the universe of my colleagues over here, the root of all evil is Fox, everything else is derivative. The administration and the NAACP acted first."
Indeed they did.
Unfortunately, as NewsBusters reported Tuesday, Sherrod went on CNN that morning accusing Fox News and the Tea Party for her dismissal.
At the end of that article we asked, "Regardless of the conclusions made by the USDA and the NAACP, is the media template going to be that Sherrod's actions took place 24 years ago, and she was wrongfully forced to resign as a result of pressure from Fox News and the Tea Party? Will Sherrod be made out as the victim by a sympathetic press?
Despite Sherrod being fired by the Administration and condemned by the NAACP BEFORE Fox News ran its first story concerning this matter, we now know what the answers to those questions are, don't we?